Migrating to an SSD

Discussion in 'DIY PC' started by Yousuf Khan, Mar 24, 2012.

  1. Yousuf Khan

    Yousuf Khan Guest

    Okay, got myself an SSD now. So I want to migrate my Windows boot drive
    to it. I have access to a couple of cloning utils that can properly copy
    system disks and make them bootable, so that's not a problem. However,
    I'm wondering if it's really that simple? I understand that there are
    some tuning that needs to be done to SSD's, such as setting its cluster
    sizes, etc. Also there is something called TRIM support that Windows 7
    needs to implement. Is this something that's built into Windows 7 right
    away, or is it something that needs to be installed? Anything else?

    Yousuf Khan
     
    Yousuf Khan, Mar 24, 2012
    #1
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  2. Yousuf Khan

    Flasherly Guest

    On Mar 23, 10:20 pm, Yousuf Khan <> wrote:
    > Okay, got myself an SSD now. So I want to migrate my Windows boot drive
    > to it. I have access to a couple of cloning utils that can properly copy
    > system disks and make them bootable, so that's not a problem. However,
    > I'm wondering if it's really that simple? I understand that there are
    > some tuning that needs to be done to SSD's, such as setting its cluster
    > sizes, etc. Also there is something called TRIM support that Windows 7
    > needs to implement. Is this something that's built into Windows 7 right
    > away, or is it something that needs to be installed? Anything else?
    >
    > Yousuf Khan


    PCMAG-

    A third-party utility, CrystalDiskInfo, confirmed that this disk did
    not offer support for the TRIM command, which is one of the key
    requirements for proper SSD operation. (Using the TRIM command allows
    the system to properly erase blocks of data in the background; for an
    explanation, see this excellent article by Anand.) Windows 7 supports
    the TRIM command natively; earlier Windows versions don’t.

    what's the firmware. . .is it great?
    disc cntrl (BIOS) - AHCI Mode (b4 W7 install)
    use manufacturer's - do NOT use W7 for full format, out-of-box
    condition
    DO use W7 for create partition (unless U like misaligned disks)
    INTEL SATA controller drivers. . .are they great?
    W7: Windows Experience Index. Score should be greater than 7.
    2nd level confidence: Get and run CrystalDiskInfo. Verify NCQ & TRIM.
     
    Flasherly, Mar 24, 2012
    #2
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  3. Yousuf Khan

    dweebken Guest

    On 24/03/2012 1:20 PM, Yousuf Khan wrote:
    > Okay, got myself an SSD now. So I want to migrate my Windows boot drive
    > to it. I have access to a couple of cloning utils that can properly copy
    > system disks and make them bootable, so that's not a problem. However,
    > I'm wondering if it's really that simple? I understand that there are
    > some tuning that needs to be done to SSD's, such as setting its cluster
    > sizes, etc. Also there is something called TRIM support that Windows 7
    > needs to implement. Is this something that's built into Windows 7 right
    > away, or is it something that needs to be installed? Anything else?
    >
    > Yousuf Khan

    On a new SSD, first I had to create a partition and format the drive. I
    then used Acronis trueimage Home 2012 to clone my laptop's HD to the
    SSD. Then swapped the drives and the SSD booted up just fine. Then
    Windows recognised a new drive in the system and loaded the drivers for
    the SSD quite happily. then rebooted and just enjoyed the incredible
    speed. It was as simple as that. Windows 7 has TRIM support built in.

    My SSD is a Corsair Performance3 256 GB device, on a Toshiba Portege
    R830 Laptop using Intel Core i5, and Win 7 Professional 64 Bit. Also
    have 8GB RAM.

    Also, once I had it working, I installed SSD tweaker from
    http://elpamsoft.com/Downloads.aspx?Name=SSD Tweaker
    and ran that.

    Oh, you might want to also run ATTO Disk Benchmark before and after too,
    to see the speed increas for yourself. It's free.

    My laptop used to take 10 min and more to boot up from cold to useable.
    Now it does a full reboot in under a minute.


    hth
     
    dweebken, Mar 24, 2012
    #3
  4. Yousuf Khan

    Bob I Guest

    You will see a LOT of opinions, some good, some not so. For my
    installation, I decided on the drive, and then followed the
    manufacturers recommendations for installation, setup and configuration.
    For me that meant a clean install and load. So before creating your own
    install procedure, read up.

    On 3/23/2012 9:20 PM, Yousuf Khan wrote:
    > Okay, got myself an SSD now. So I want to migrate my Windows boot drive
    > to it. I have access to a couple of cloning utils that can properly copy
    > system disks and make them bootable, so that's not a problem. However,
    > I'm wondering if it's really that simple? I understand that there are
    > some tuning that needs to be done to SSD's, such as setting its cluster
    > sizes, etc. Also there is something called TRIM support that Windows 7
    > needs to implement. Is this something that's built into Windows 7 right
    > away, or is it something that needs to be installed? Anything else?
    >
    > Yousuf Khan
     
    Bob I, Mar 24, 2012
    #4
  5. Yousuf Khan

    Drew Guest

    On 3/23/2012 7:20 PM, Yousuf Khan wrote:
    > Okay, got myself an SSD now. So I want to migrate my Windows boot drive
    > to it. I have access to a couple of cloning utils that can properly copy
    > system disks and make them bootable, so that's not a problem. However,
    > I'm wondering if it's really that simple? I understand that there are
    > some tuning that needs to be done to SSD's, such as setting its cluster
    > sizes, etc. Also there is something called TRIM support that Windows 7
    > needs to implement. Is this something that's built into Windows 7 right
    > away, or is it something that needs to be installed? Anything else?
    >
    > Yousuf Khan

    Recently did the same with a drive that had become too small to hold my
    windows7.I installed a new Intel 120 gig ssd into my "box' and then
    using the included Intel migration software it took approx 15 minutes or
    less to migrate my boot drive to the new ssd. I then rebooted and
    changed the boot order.At that point it changed my new drive to c: and
    changed the old drive to L:. Worked perfectly and after 1 month I
    formatted the old drive and it is now storage. Intel Migration Software
    is just a free somewhat limited version of Acronis I believe and it is
    updated frequently.I was leery about doing it but I found it was
    amazingly easy and required very little on my part to perform this.
    What brand of ssd did you purchase Yousuf?
     
    Drew, Mar 24, 2012
    #5
  6. Yousuf Khan

    Yousuf Khan Guest

    Yousuf Khan, Mar 24, 2012
    #6
  7. Yousuf Khan

    Yousuf Khan Guest

    On 24/03/2012 3:27 AM, charlie wrote:
    > Besides all of the above, there is another, perhaps quite important
    > consideration. SSDs are a good host for "static" files, and not so good
    > for dynamic ones. It would seem that windows should be reorganized on
    > that basis, with static directories and files on the SSD.
    > The registry will likely need manual editing to accommodate the changes.


    That's actually something I was thinking about. Should I move things
    like the swapfile, Thunderbird data, and just "User" folder in general,
    off to regular storage?

    Yousuf Khan
     
    Yousuf Khan, Mar 24, 2012
    #7
  8. On Fri, 23 Mar 2012 22:20:48 -0400, Yousuf Khan
    <> wrote:

    >Okay, got myself an SSD now. So I want to migrate my Windows boot drive
    >to it. I have access to a couple of cloning utils that can properly copy
    >system disks and make them bootable, so that's not a problem. However,
    >I'm wondering if it's really that simple? I understand that there are
    >some tuning that needs to be done to SSD's, such as setting its cluster
    >sizes, etc. Also there is something called TRIM support that Windows 7
    >needs to implement. Is this something that's built into Windows 7 right
    >away, or is it something that needs to be installed? Anything else?


    Windows 7 supports trim, no problem.

    The issue that matters is that a simple copy onto the drive will
    produce a misaligned layout that will be bad for performance. There
    are programs out there that will take a drive and correctly align the
    data, I have never looked into them.
     
    Loren Pechtel, Mar 24, 2012
    #8
  9. On Sat, 24 Mar 2012 03:27:30 -0400, charlie <> wrote:

    >Besides all of the above, there is another, perhaps quite important
    >consideration. SSDs are a good host for "static" files, and not so good
    >for dynamic ones. It would seem that windows should be reorganized on
    >that basis, with static directories and files on the SSD.
    >The registry will likely need manual editing to accommodate the changes.
    >
    >(I have two SSDs (120G each) in systems that I'm going to "reorganize",
    >as soon as I figure out a reasonable way to accomplish the task.


    That's the theory at least but even though I didn't do anything to
    keep the dynamic stuff off the SSDs I'm happy with how they are
    performing.

    I have a 256gb that hosts my Win7 system and a 128gb that hosts two
    virtual machines. They've been in use for a year now and I've managed
    to write so much to the 128gb one that it's life is down to 99%. The
    256gb is still at 100%.
     
    Loren Pechtel, Mar 24, 2012
    #9
  10. Yousuf Khan

    BillW50 Guest

    In news:,
    Loren Pechtel wrote:
    > They've been in use for a year now and I've managed to write so much
    > to the 128gb one that it's life is down to 99%. The 256gb is still at
    > 100%.


    What are you using that tells you what the wear level is?

    --
    Bill
    Gateway M465e ('06 era) - OE-QuoteFix v1.19.2
    Centrino Core Duo T2400 1.83GHz - 2GB - Windows XP SP3
     
    BillW50, Mar 24, 2012
    #10
  11. Yousuf Khan

    Yousuf Khan Guest

    On 24/03/2012 1:02 AM, Flasherly wrote:
    > what's the firmware. . .is it great?
    > disc cntrl (BIOS) - AHCI Mode (b4 W7 install)
    > use manufacturer's - do NOT use W7 for full format, out-of-box
    > condition
    > DO use W7 for create partition (unless U like misaligned disks)
    > INTEL SATA controller drivers. . .are they great?


    Should I use the Intel drivers even for a non-Intel SSD (I got Corsair
    Force 3 240GB).

    > W7: Windows Experience Index. Score should be greater than 7.
    > 2nd level confidence: Get and run CrystalDiskInfo. Verify NCQ& TRIM.


    Okay.

    Yousuf Khan
     
    Yousuf Khan, Mar 24, 2012
    #11
  12. Yousuf Khan

    Paul Guest

    BillW50 wrote:
    > In news:,
    > Loren Pechtel wrote:
    >> They've been in use for a year now and I've managed to write so much
    >> to the 128gb one that it's life is down to 99%. The 256gb is still at
    >> 100%.

    >
    > What are you using that tells you what the wear level is?
    >


    SMART for SSDs has some different info than SMART for hard drives.
    It's possible "percent life" is a parameter in the new SMART.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S.M.A.R.T.

    "233 0xE9 Media Wearout Indicator

    Intel SSD reports a normalized value of 100 (when the SSD is new)
    and declines to a minimum value of 1."

    Paul
     
    Paul, Mar 24, 2012
    #12
  13. In message <4f6e3bcb$-lp.com>, Yousuf Khan
    <> writes:
    >On 24/03/2012 3:27 AM, charlie wrote:
    >> Besides all of the above, there is another, perhaps quite important
    >> consideration. SSDs are a good host for "static" files, and not so good
    >> for dynamic ones. It would seem that windows should be reorganized on
    >> that basis, with static directories and files on the SSD.
    >> The registry will likely need manual editing to accommodate the changes.

    >
    >That's actually something I was thinking about. Should I move things
    >like the swapfile, Thunderbird data, and just "User" folder in general,
    >off to regular storage?
    >
    > Yousuf Khan


    When it is said that they "are a good host" or "not so good", is that in
    terms of performance, or longevity? I'd have thought that in terms of
    performance, even if non-optimal, having almost any file on an SSD would
    be better; but I could also believe that certain much-written files
    would significantly shorted the life of the SSD, especially if not
    optimised (is that what this "Trim" thing is about?).
    --
    J. P. Gilliver. UMRA: 1960/<1985 MB++G.5AL-IS-P--Ch++(p)Ar@T0H+Sh0!:`)DNAf

    He spoke in sentences that made up paragraphs, with immaculate grammar and
    punctuation. - Barry Cryer on Clement Freud 1924-2009, in Radio Times, 25 April
    - 1 May 2009.
     
    J. P. Gilliver (John), Mar 24, 2012
    #13
  14. Yousuf Khan

    Drew Guest

    On 3/24/2012 2:28 PM, Loren Pechtel wrote:
    > On Fri, 23 Mar 2012 22:20:48 -0400, Yousuf Khan
    > <> wrote:
    >
    >> Okay, got myself an SSD now. So I want to migrate my Windows boot drive
    >> to it. I have access to a couple of cloning utils that can properly copy
    >> system disks and make them bootable, so that's not a problem. However,
    >> I'm wondering if it's really that simple? I understand that there are
    >> some tuning that needs to be done to SSD's, such as setting its cluster
    >> sizes, etc. Also there is something called TRIM support that Windows 7
    >> needs to implement. Is this something that's built into Windows 7 right
    >> away, or is it something that needs to be installed? Anything else?

    >
    > Windows 7 supports trim, no problem.
    >
    > The issue that matters is that a simple copy onto the drive will
    > produce a misaligned layout that will be bad for performance. There
    > are programs out there that will take a drive and correctly align the
    > data, I have never looked into them.


    Not trying to be argumentative but wondering where you got that info. My
    ssd scores a 7.2 (older motherboard does not support higher speeds) on
    the WEI and I would think that is pretty good for a 6 year old system. I
    am running a Intel 320 series 120gig drive and my old Intel x25 40 gig
    had the same score. Running any programs or even everything open and
    doing any work is like changing channels on a tv, it is instantaneous.
     
    Drew, Mar 24, 2012
    #14
  15. In message <>, Allen Drake
    <> writes:
    []
    >Intel's claim is actually "at least" 5 years at 20GBytes of writes per
    >day.

    []
    I presume that's 20G randomly spread around the drive.
    --
    J. P. Gilliver. UMRA: 1960/<1985 MB++G.5AL-IS-P--Ch++(p)Ar@T0H+Sh0!:`)DNAf

    a little bit of me still feels that some southerners think we northerners are
    issued at birth with doomed kestrels. - Alison Graham, Radio Times,
    3-9/11/2007.
     
    J. P. Gilliver (John), Mar 24, 2012
    #15
  16. Yousuf Khan

    Paul Guest

    J. P. Gilliver (John) wrote:
    > In message <>, Allen Drake
    > <> writes:
    > []
    >> Intel's claim is actually "at least" 5 years at 20GBytes of writes per
    >> day.

    > []
    > I presume that's 20G randomly spread around the drive.


    It's spread by wear leveling inside the drive. The
    drive has a layer of indirection so that the flash
    blocks wear evenly.

    Paul
     
    Paul, Mar 24, 2012
    #16
  17. Yousuf Khan

    Char Jackson Guest

    On Sat, 24 Mar 2012 23:23:20 +0000, "J. P. Gilliver (John)"
    <> wrote:

    >In message <>, Allen Drake
    ><> writes:
    >[]
    >>Intel's claim is actually "at least" 5 years at 20GBytes of writes per
    >>day.

    >[]
    >I presume that's 20G randomly spread around the drive.


    My understanding is that it's taken care of for you automatically,
    i.e., wear leveling.

    --

    Char Jackson
     
    Char Jackson, Mar 25, 2012
    #17
  18. Yousuf Khan

    Yousuf Khan Guest

    On 24/03/2012 6:08 PM, Allen Drake wrote:
    > Did you mention which SSD you have? I just received number 10 a few
    > days ago. I have mostly Crucial and have had to update firmware twice
    > so far. Not a problem though.


    Corsair Force 3 240GB.
     
    Yousuf Khan, Mar 25, 2012
    #18
  19. Yousuf Khan

    Yousuf Khan Guest

    On 24/03/2012 6:20 PM, Allen Drake wrote:
    > I would think it would depend on the capacity of the SSD. I use 256GB
    > SSDs and so far I have only used 60 GB. I do have backup HDDs
    > installed along with USB3 external for large video and music, etc.


    No, I'm not worried about space, I bought one big enough to accommodate
    everything that I have in my current boot drive. I'm more worried about
    writing too much to the SSD. My understanding is that SSD's wear down
    with too much writing to them. Thunderbird and the swapfile would be
    some major recurring write events.

    Yousuf Khan
     
    Yousuf Khan, Mar 25, 2012
    #19
  20. Yousuf Khan

    Yousuf Khan Guest

    On 24/03/2012 6:28 PM, J. P. Gilliver (John) wrote:
    > When it is said that they "are a good host" or "not so good", is that in
    > terms of performance, or longevity? I'd have thought that in terms of
    > performance, even if non-optimal, having almost any file on an SSD would
    > be better; but I could also believe that certain much-written files
    > would significantly shorted the life of the SSD, especially if not
    > optimised (is that what this "Trim" thing is about?).


    Yeah, longevity is my major concern here too, so should I avoid putting
    anything that has too much writing happening to it? As for Trim, it's a
    command that tells the SSD that a sector is no longer in use, so it can
    go in and erase that area during idle moments in the background.

    Yousuf Khan
     
    Yousuf Khan, Mar 25, 2012
    #20
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